Thursday, September 23, 2010

About Last Week...

I am still recovering from the unbridled, overflowing, achy-jaws treasure that was last week. I sit in full knowledge that I cannot possibly do justice to our time together, but it's a pretty big deal, so I'll give it my best shot.

Remember the days when we secretly felt like girls were just too much trouble to cultivate close friendships with? Sure, we had a trusty fistful, but by and large, it seemed too risky. Too dangerous. Not worth the effort.

I look back on those years, where I stayed somewhat out of the fray, and I wish I could whisper in my ear the honest truth - Girlfriends are necessary. Not just one or two or five, but all different kinds, from all different corners.

Last week I spent time with three of the most beautiful hearts. I learned from each of them.

The four of us did all of the things a passel of girls does best.

We ate, we shopped, we gabbed, repeat. When all was said and done, I knew they were mine forever.

There was mutual concern that our friendship could not survive the Springfield Extravaganza, but in the end, there was enough chippiness and blue to satisfy everyone.

We are all different. We are all the same.

(Well, except for the guy in the yellow shirt.)

We are at different stages in life, we've all learned different lessons, and we're ready to talk.

It's true, three out of the four are prone to waking up unprompted at 6:45 in the ayem while one of the four will yawn all the live-long day only to spring to life somewhere around midnight, then pretend to be asleep in the morning until the smell of homemade French toasts wafts across the room and she just can't keep up the charade, but that's a whole 'nother story.

I am thankful for Jenn, the friend that is slightly less new to me than the others. She came into my life in a way that made me fear she had been here all along and I'd just been to willy-nilly to notice. The words she speaks are the perfect balance of genuine sugar and salty wit. If I could choose one person to read me to sleep for the rest of my life, it would be her. Her voice is a piccolo tune. Her tender heart softens mine a little through sheer proximity.

I am thankful for Jayme. She gave me an inch of cyber friendship and I took a mile, showing up on her door-step practically unannounced earlier this summer. Together, we have nearly perfected our own written dialect, seamlessly comprised of various accents and eras. This girl wrote the book on nurturing and serving. It would be impossible to escape her presence feeling unloved or uncared for. And did I mention that she's pretty dang funny? And her honey cookies should be patented?

I am thankful for Teresa. It takes a special girl to stay with my crazy, young family for three solid days and truly appear to enjoy the pandemonium. She effortlessly became a part of our routine. She wore sweatpants with me and discussed the virtues of Riggins vs. Coach T, she ate the casserole and frozen garlic bread I served in a pinch, she ignored the clutter, she echoed my very heart and regaled me with exasperating teenager tales, she snickered in the kitchen with Cory and I after Calvin unburdened his subconscious of dreams about talking cloths, and on the last night, she puttered into my kitchen, banged some cabinets around and returned bearing bowls of apple dumplings and ice cream. The amazing part is, I let her do it. It just felt right. She is kind and supportive in exactly the way I hope to be. She is funny to beat the band.

I have learned the hard way, over the years, that growing meaningful friendships can be a little scary and a lot of work. They can be a leap of faith, to be sure.

But finding one new friend who is honest and kind and encouraging and supportive and funny and smart and open and generous and quirky is a gift.

And finding three is a gift of a lifetime.

27 comments:

  1. Oh Shabs-I'm just here working on me own blog of the days we had, and I popped over here to see if you had yours up and ya do. Well - law girl - I shan't be able to put things into words, so I'm just going to put your link on my blog. I'm thankful for you - sho nuff I is. Sho nuff.

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  2. I am sure these new friendships will last a lifetime. What a blessing.

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  3. Oh dear. The tears have now officially arrived. I knew your words would explain what my heart was feeling. You are so, so precious to me. I really feel like the luckiest girl alive these days. I love you girls like you were my own. And you are. Lets plan something very soon. Before the glow has a chance to wear off.

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  4. P.S. It's clear in that picture that I was afraid of the waiter. Poor guy was just trying to show some love. Hope I didn't hurt his feelings.

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  5. Ooohhh, your time sounds amazing! I'm so happy for you! Friends like that are so hard to come by!

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  6. Okay, just left Jayme's post. Hers made me smile, yours made me cry! In a good way. In the I need to be in prayer for that kind of friendship way!

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  7. Girlfriends truly are the best. Thanks for sharing.

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  8. All I can say is...how cool is this???

    So happy for you guys to have found each other! Isn't this blogland a crazy place??? Who ever thought 5 years ago it would have brought us to friends we were just destined to meet? ;o)

    ~mary~

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  9. Oh, it sounds wonderful! Makes me ache for a girl outing.

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  10. I thought I was the only one who was a bit wary of girlfriends - thanks for this post and the challenge to reconnect with some of my precious girls. Xx

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  11. I want to find some new friends!!! :-) and some honey cookies!

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  12. I, too, thought girls were just too much trouble. And then I made two very unlikely friends this summer. I couldn't be more surprised or more pleased by the way this friendship of three has blossomed. I wish I had done this sooner.

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  13. This is such a sweet post. When we moved I cried all the way out of town thinking about leaving my best friend and moving to a town where I knew no one. But God is good and He has brought me dear friends here as well.

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  14. So wonderful! It's amazing the souls you can meet via blogging and truly they can brighten, sooth, and inspire. Sounds like a truly fabulous week and I'm so glad you met such amazing women! Each sounds like an amazing blessing to your life and the life of so many others. A good gab session with females can be such a cornerstone for much else in life. Sending a hug your way!

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  15. I miss you Shannan!
    I miss the Fox Room.
    I miss your family.
    I miss Silo's jibber jabber and sweet smile.
    I miss Ruby's ability to hop on one foot for days on end.
    I really miss hearing about Talking Cloth. I feel for a kid who's nightly terrorized by a speaking linen.
    I miss your house and its comfort and its ability to feel like home to me five minutes after I first walked in the door.
    I miss having to sit on a cute little stool to brush my teeth and fix my hair in a mirror that hits me at the waist.
    I miss Green Bean Casserole.
    I really miss Rosemary Rolls.
    And Pita Sandwiches.
    I miss YOU...the best Farmgirl Friend a girl could ever have.

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  16. Awww friends there is nothing like a good friend. That looked right up my ally and that food...yummy! Glad you had so much fun. Have a great weekend girlie.

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  17. What a blessing! You are a blessed girl.

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  18. friends ARE good, great. I make friends easy, but in the last year 4 friends have gone KUCKOO! on me. yes they have gotten so possesive/jealous, crazy, saying things you shouldn't say....anyway I'm starting from scratch. well I do have my BFF since 2nd grade, who is my one true blue friend through all lifes up and down and ins and outs, and I TREASURE her!

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  19. I'm jealous - I wish I had that.

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  20. What a beautifull blog about friendships.... and you are so true.... friendships are so important!

    Greetings from Holland!
    Barbara

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  21. The four of you balance each other so well. I am thankful we were able to meet and spend a few minutes together. I think the saying,"It takes a long time to grow old friends", has been put on a shelf with you girls. For you all acted and chatted like old friends already. I feel like I have three new daughters. You will appreciate each other more and more as life weaves you together through laughter and tears. How awesome you found one another, even the waiter looked jealous!!

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  22. Friendships truly are so worth the effort. You've made me wish for a girl's weekend...now, if I can ever convince myself (longer than the seconds it took to read this post) to leave my little man overnight, maybe, just maybe, I, too, could savor a weekend like this.

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  23. Such a wonderful post on friends. You took the words out of my mouth. Been burned a few times so I pushed back. I realize now how important friends are!!
    On another note, I see a few tables I want in that picture, I could do wonders with paint!
    Have a great weekend!
    XO

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  24. I've read about your adventure from 4 different perspectives now and it was so interesting to see it that way. What fun you all must have had.
    Chris

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  25. Don't you feel completely blessed to have connected with women that, without blogging, you would have never met? And then, the cherry on the sundae, meeting them and getting to know them even more!!!
    I am so happy that you were able to spend time with such inspiring, wonderful friends!
    Have a fabulous rest of your week,
    xx

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  26. You are such a great writer! You should write a book!
    Jen

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